Assessment Resistance: Using Kubler-Ross to Understand and Respond

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Purpose: Faculty participation in the assurance of learning (AoL) is requisite both for the effective operation of the system and for accreditation compliance, but faculty often resist engaging in AoL tasks. The purpose of this paper is to provide specific recommendations to address faculty concerns and to guide AoL systems toward maturity. Design/methodology/approach: This paper provides a comprehensive model of faculty resistance perspectives aligned to AoL maturity, provides specific responses to faculty resistance and introduces success markers of progress toward maturity. Findings: Specifically, a three-stage model of AoL system maturity is presented and aligned with five faculty perspectives. For each faculty perspective, responses targeting causal factors are proposed and signs of progress toward the next level of faculty engagement are highlighted. Practical implications: Faculty and AoL leaders will be able to identify their current stage of AoL system maturity and implement practical solutions to move to the next stage of system maturity. Social implications: Understanding the motivations for faculty resistance will facilitate more meaningful and effective internal interactions as a school seeks to improve its AoL system. In turn, a more effective AoL system will promote better learning experiences for students; and better learning allows students to become productive in their chosen careers more quickly, thus improving society as a whole. Originality/value: To the knowledge, no prior paper has organized faculty resistance along a maturity continuum, provided targeted responses based on the level of maturity or included signs that indicate growth toward the next level of maturity.